William's Bonanza game art
(while restoring  the screened game art , I created this version to use here) see below for more info.

 William's Gun (Rifle) Electro Mechanical (EM) Game, 6/70, Game #384, Electronic (Reverb) Sound, 26" Wide 69" High 35.5" Deep



Here is the game as purchased



Alternative board setup, with Muntz 4track player.                                                                                       
Note: auxiliary amplifier used for sound effects                                                                                                  The version below is the more common version
   




Note: the missing art in the center is not missing just not attached.
The missing rider is also not attached, received this way. The chain was missing the master link as well as having the following issue.

Again thanks to Pinball Resource who had the actual replacement part  (B-7300) this  will be replaced shortly!
The master link is a  #41 (pitch ½" roller width ¼")  not available from Pbresource.




Here is a schematic of the MUNTZ player



The above schematic came from the inside lid of my muntz, it was in poor condition, if you have a cleaner one and can scan it please email it.



Note: total plays 39,877
Also note slightly?  melted knocker  (thanks to Pinball resource this will be replaced shortly)

Here is the rifle stock stripped and restoration begun on the barrel.


I will refinish the stock in the near future plus try my hand at restoring the finish on the barrel. (though hard to see most of the rust has already been removed.
See picture of above for condition as received.

                                                                                  Here it is restored!
Before and...........................................................


A few people have asked how this was done.
Here are the steps:
After disassembly. I stripped the stock using a product called Citrustrip. There are NO fumes and it strips multiple layers of varnish including pigmented wood stains.
This product works great. I sprayed it on and waited 5 minutes and literally wiped off 40 years of grime and the original finish in moments. This photo shows the start of the process.



I then sanded the stock, removing imperfections. This is an important step. It's tempting to say "that's enough" but any imperfections left will be amplified by the new finish. I only sanded with the grain and started with a coarser paper moving higher in grit #  finally to steel wool. For the next steps I purchased a kit  made by Birchwood Casey "complete Tru-oil gun stock finish kit"   It pretty much includes everything you need to do this job. It even includes sandpaper and steel wool!
Next was to apply the stain, in this case a water based walnut stain provided in the kit. I put on multiple coats to achieve the color I liked. I then went over it with 0000 steel wool. Finally wiped the wood off ("tack cloth"). Then onto the finish. The kit comes with Tru-oil finish. Here's where you put your personal touch on this, literally.  Using my finger I applied the finish to the stock. Once coated I let it dry. I hung it up by the front mounting hole.
Once dry, I again hit it with the steel wool and a few spots with 400 grit paper. Then onto the next coat after wiping it down.
And so it went for about 4 coats.  At this point I have not used the final product provided with the kit, which is "stock sheen and conditioner" . This product removes any imperfections and leaves a satin Finish behind. I haven't decided if I will do this yet.
Again everything you need to do this is in the Birchwood Casey kit # 23801 GSK, it also includes more detailed instructions then I have included here.

Next on to the barrel.
I used a "Bluewonder" gun blue kit to refinish the barrel. This is a liquid kit not a paste kit.The hardest part of this process is sanding down the barrel to remove all the rust. The cleaner the parts are the better the finish, go figure.Once that is done.... using this kit is like magic. I heated the barrel with a hair dryer and applied the finish, in an instant the metal turns Blue!.When I was happy with the color there is a protective finish to apply. Again everything you need is in the kit.
The finished product is ....amazing. Judge for yourself.










This is a 1961 Ad for the  model 514 rifle used on Bonanza, check out that price!                               Annoucement in Billboard


Here is the start of the cabinet restoration. Since all the art on my cabinet has been painted over I have no visible art to trace.
Unfortunately I'm not aware of any local collectors that has one of these that I can trace the art from.
I thought it would be possible to carefully remove the top layers of paint to expose the original art without much difficulty, that proved to be not true,
I tried a number of suggested methods. None worked well on what appears to be paint that is many years old. Using a heat gun I was able to get at enough of the art to begin recreating  the front side of the cabinet art.
Here is the art re-created on the side door and a pix showing my archeological "dig" to uncover the art.



I'm currently in contact with a fellow owner (Steve Moritz in Long Beach Ca.)who has offered stencils he has created to repaint his Bonanza game, when he is done with them. This is a welcomed development given how much work it is to get at the original art work.

Grill ( 2 versions)

The front pegboard cover which hides the volume controls ( gunshot, explosion, background sounds), speakers and bell is also missing from my game.
The choice of pegboard is an obvious one to allow the 2 speakers behind the grill to be heard.

Here is a picture of the grill provided by another Bonanza owner ( Jim Divoky)  and  an alternative version.


There appears to be 2 versions of this grill. Possibly  an early version and a later version.
Here are some pictures of the process to create the grill.


 
                    Here is the finished grill                                                                                                                                    Getting closer
                                                                                                                                         

Art Restoration
I was able to "cleanup" most of the scenery art using color matched paints but after starting to work on the "target score scenery", I wasn't happy with how it was turning out. Though the blue and white areas turned out ok, the rest proved to be a challenge to restore (see above for art condition as received). It appears that some of the damage may have come from excess oil on the chain used to move the rider target.  I decided to try my hand at re-creating the art rather than continuing the restoration of the original. First the art was scanned. Next a crude cleanup was done. Then it was broken into layers. Each layer was then repaired and redrawn as necessary (thanks to my daughter for her help here). Finally it was printed on a heavy inkjet paper using a commercial sign printer. The result was better than I had expected. I then sealed both sides of the paper using  a product called "super surface sealer". I then glued the art to illustration board using spray adhesive.
The final step is to add the black light sensitive paint to the areas that need it.
The end product is actually better than the original. The original had  errors in overlapping the different layers, this does not.


The small flashlight as you may have guessed illuminates the fluorescent paint which helps when trying to paint this.
The paint (Wildfire paints) for the sky was mixed to achieve a match for the original, orange in normal light, yellow under black light.
Another positive of doing this, it got rid of the ugly staples and holes caused by the method they used to attach this to the game.
I intend to use velcro to attach the new art!.


SOUND SYSTEM INFORMATION
I'm looking into an upgrade for the sound system, using some modern circuit choices.

Of note if you are reading this and have your own Bonanza, you may be able to restore the original sound effects easily.
If you are fortunate enough to have the muntz sound board in your game but no tape , you may be in luck if the player amp is good along with a working reverb unit in the game and delay relays (good 250uf & 1500 uf caps).
Just pop the cover off the player and manually engage the tape drive as though a tape was installed, turning it on.
Close up the player. If the amp in the player works , volume controls up, you should now have the effects working. No background music of course.

There is some misinformation out there on how this system works, it's very simple.
Short duration of reverb pickup on = gunshot, long duration of  pickup reverb on = mine explosion.
Those 250uf & 1500uf are what keeps the sound on.

Volumes for both altered by the volume controls behind the grill. Obviously the gunshot should be lower and the explosion louder.


For those that do not have the muntz board, you too can re-activate the original effects by adding an external amp with magnetic cartridge preamp.
Here is a cheap one that shows up on ebay and will work. It's a radio shack SA-150 . You could use the second channel for the back ground sounds with an 8track player and available 8track tape, or now  add the board below  for  complete sound restoration.

Game Cabinet Sound Wiring Information

The connector on the board is setup like this. Unfortunately there isn't a color code chart on the wires .
To get the correct orientation if  you use a meter you should be able to locate (DE) about 14 volts ac or easier, the pickup coil signal (BG) is on a shielded cable.

This lettering represents looking down at the connector on the sound board. So it's equal to looking at the back of the connector...if that makes sense.


  A B C D E  
  F G H  I  J


A=Ground (also Music / Background effects Out Gnd)
B=Reverb IN (Comes from reverb unit pickup coil-shielded cable)
C=Music / Background effects OUT (connected to output of Muntz) out to game
D=AC (input to bridge rectifier for muntz 12volt power, on sound board)
E=AC (to bridge on sound board)
F
=Sound Effect (Gun shot / explosion) output to game ( not be used on later games would be considered common on Muntz since both sounds went through it)
G=Reverb IN (Comes from reverb unit pickup coil-shielded cable)
H=Sound Effect  (Gun shot / explosion)  output to game
I=12volt + power for tape deck
J=12volt+ power from bridge rectifier (on sound board)

The Reverb In  (BG) would go to the Magnetic phono input.on an amp (one side ..say left)
The sound effect out  (HF) would go to speaker output of the amp (one side ...say left)  

For the Music / Background effects OUT (AC) , connect to digital source, tape player etc. (must auto repeat)
If the source for this is the right impedance / level  it may be possible to use the other preamp / amp channel for this.


ORIGINAL BONANZA TAPE SOUND

Don't forget the volume controls behind the front grill

You will be able to control how loud the gunshot is versus the explosion. The difference in sound between them being how long the sound stays on from the vibrating spring on the reverb.

One last thing, if using an external amplifier / preamp most likely the Ground (A) will need to be connected to the chassis ground of the amp (reduce hum).
Also,  the available schematic shows the reverb pickup coil sharing one side with the speaker common, on my unit this is not true. If your unit is wired that way,
attention will have to be paid to hooking up the inputs and outputs so that the grounds match. Do this by checking that none of the pins (BGHF) are connected together using an ohm meter. If  they are, those are the common ground wires.


New Update to Sound


Here is one working solution to update the sound system


This board has the background music recorded on it. It runs on 12 volts and can auto start and loop play.
It's only major drawback is it's .5watt output limitation. I have tested it and it works well. As I write this I  have
not tried running it with game's speaker along with the game running (motor noise etc)
So the jury is out whether the output is sufficient to overcome the games operating noise.
This board is normally sold for use by model railroad enthusiasts. I had the background audio file custom loaded into it.
Effectively this tiny board replaces the 4track player along with an  additional amplifier for the sound effects.
I'm looking into a 12volt  stereo amp one channel for the background and on channel for the effects.
All of the above can be mounted on the sound system board and be connected there including power.

Adding realistic sound effects to replace the reverb output will take a bit more work and require additional module(s) and a circuit
change to allow for different sounds to be used. Unlike the original sounds which are really one sound with different time lengths.

A single additional module wired to respond to the control of the reverb relay could substitute for that unit. This could provide more realistic sounds for both
the explosion and gunshot.

The best solution would be 2 additional modules for the separate sounds.


Contact me for more info. on where to obtain this board.
(BTW the modules run about $35)


Available Documentation

There are 3 available for purchase, a total of 5 that I know of.

1. The Instruction Manual
2. The Wiring Diagram/Schematic
3. The Catalog Supplement "X" with new parts and units for Bonanza
4. The William's 1971-72 Parts Catalog  (covers all William's games from space pilot 11/68 to Cimarron 12/70 including prices!)
     (according to the above catalog the replacement screened glass for bonanza in 1971 was $24.00)
5. The Game Flyer
The first 3 are available from pbresource.com



Stay tuned for more.


Here are a few images from the left and right inside cabinet walls.
These are illuminated with black light.




If anyone has any more infomation on this game (parts sources etc.), including those responsible for it's design, and art, please email me.
Also looking for a copy of the original schematic showing the sound board with the external preamp.
Email Steve